connaught veteran vintage motor club

In recent years the Club membership has blossomed, with the result that many of today's members have no idea where or how the club came into being. Below is a brief history compiled from some of our long-standing member's memories

The Western Veteran & Vintage Motor Club was formed following the I.V.V.C.C Autumn Rally in 1977. This rally was held in Galway and a number of West Of Ireland enthusiasts got together with the idea of forming a local Vintage Car Club. The date was the 4th September 1977; well-known Dublin enthusiast Gay Brennan chaired the meeting. Malcolm Alexander was elected President: Tom Tuck, Chairman: Owen Quinn, Secretary and Emmett Boyle, Treasurer. Among those present were John Connor, Thomas Connor, Joe Crann, Mary Tuck, Tom Healy and Kevin Leahy.

The first rally of the W.V.V.M.C. started in Galway, travelling through Oughterard and finishing with a dinner dance in The Dolphin Hotel, Crossmolina. The Oldest car on this inaugural event was Jim Boland's Stanley Streamer. Many Galway based rallies followed and in 1984 the Connaught Veteran and Vintage Motor Club was formed. One of the aims of the club was to promote the vintage car movement throughout the whole of North Connaught. Those who attended the first meeting of the new club were: Mick Gorman, John Connor, Finaun Bourke, Kevin Connor, Aiden Connor, Michael Mullen, Thomas Connor, peg Connor, Gay Brennan, John Hooks and Vincent Neary. The first C.V.V.M.C. main rally was held in Achill Island over the weekend 29/30th June 1985. Virtually every year since then the club has staged their main rally on the last full weekend in June. It has been the club policy from the very start to move the events round the hinterland of our membership and, as a result of this, we stage our main rally (and also our smaller runs) in a different area each year.

As 1886 was classed as the year that the motor car properly first hit the road, it was decided to run a "Centenary of Motoring Rally" in the West of Ireland. With the generous support of Gulf Oil and Heneghan Plan Supplies, the C.V.V.M.C both staged and organised this event over the15th/16th July 1986. The midweek date was chosen especially as it preceded the weekend of the Gordon Bennett Rally and as a result, we were able to obtain the entries from some very special motorcars. The event started in Swinford and followed through overnight in Beleek Castle in Ballina. The following morning the cars travelled to Oughterard via Crossmolina, Pontoon, Castlebar(lunch stop), Ballinrobe, Cong (Ashford Castle) and finally Maam. The cup winners at this very first rally were: Hugh Roe, Noel Grainger, Michael Maher and Freddie Vaugh.